DCF: Tell the people – Who are you?
Sunni & The City
Midday On-Air Host
CBS Radio/ WPGC 95.5
Sunni: I am a Bosnian born, Detroit raised, DC living radio host. Radio is my first love, charity is my passion (DCF: We love a lady that gives back!!). Always living by… “If you’re not poor enough to receive charity then you’re rich enough to give it. ”
DCF: What does being funemployed mean to you & what was your path to funemployment?
Sunni: FunEmployment to me means just that. Having a great time with your career/job. I never thought that I would be a radio host (due to my thick accent) but years of hard work paid off. Somewhere along the lines I found a way to balance a very celebrity driven (somewhat shallow) industry with my charity and that gives me so much joy. There’s more to life than just talking about celebrities. I started as an intern at the age of 18 and now 13 years later, I’m working in the best city in the world.
DCF: Who was your first cheerleader?
Sunni: My parents were always opposed to me working in radio. They’re hard working immigrants & their idea of the American dream didn’t include a microphone. So it was hard for me not to have that support system at home. I found my cheerleaders & mentors in the industry. My first boss KJ Holiday and my first mentor Bushman in Detroit always believed in me. Them looking out for me meant a lot.
DCF: What experiences in your life prepared you for where you are now?
Sunni: I think that we all have a story to tell. We all have faced challenges in one way or another that have shaped our mindset & strength. I think me having to prove myself to my parents and my peers definitely made me work so hard and succeed. Having someone you love tell you “see I told you that wasn’t going to work for you” makes you work that much harder to prove them wrong.
DCF: Where do you get your inspiration and/or motivation?
Sunni: I get inspired by a lot of things/people. Despite working in an entertainment industry, I’m not very inspired by actual celebrities. I love watching documentaries on different cultures, reading about real life heroes, regular people making extraordinary changes in the world. Especially women. I get inspired by that. I’m a news junkie so I don’t miss much lol.
DCF: What does balance mean to you and how do find balance?
Sunni: It took me a while to find my balance between work and fun because the lines are so blurry there. I’m super OCD and having a strict schedule and order in my life is so necessary for me to feel like I’m on track. I’ve learned to set aside time just to sit peacefully in my bedroom, no phone, meditate, etc. I have to have structure in order to function. You can balance so many things if you just plan it out. (DCF: Amen sister – I live by my planner!!)
DCF: What sacrifices did you have to make to get here?
Sunni: I think that my biggest sacrifice and guilt is not being around my family. We’ve been through so much collectively and I’m the only one that moved away to follow my dreams. Not having them around daily is hard but we make it work.
DCF: What struggles have you faced as a women in your industry?
Sunni: Women in general have it harder in any industry. Mine is no more no less. I think that we have to be ON 100% when it comes to our professionalism to get the same respect. We aren’t allowed to slip up or make mistakes. Especially in a industry when you’re dealing with celebrities. Your reputation is everything.
DCF: What is the early advice you didn’t listen to that you wish you had?
Sunni: I’ve always followed my heart and made sure that all decisions were mine so there aren’t many things that I regret or that I would do differently. My mother always gave us advice on marriage and how it’s important to start families early and I’ve always brushed it off because I was so focused on my career. Now I wonder how different my life would be if I had gotten married in my 20s but I have no regrets. Love comes at any age.
DCF: What was your greatest failure and what did you learn from it?
Sunni: My greatest failure was not finishing college. At 20 yrs old I was offered a job in radio that I just couldn’t pass up and that snowballed my entire career. Bigger things came after that and I never went back. I know how important education is and that’s something that still lingers in the back of my mind after all these years. But I learned that everyone’s path to success is different. If I didn’t take that job .. who knows what would’ve happened and how long before another chance came around.
DCF: What is your proudest moment?
Sunni: A year ago I bought my first home (DCF: Yassss #AdultGoals) and that was one of my proudest personal moments. I’ve moved so much throughout my 20s and to finally be in the city that I love and own a home is amazing. Definitely a proud moment for the kid!
I’m working on so many things! I’m finally writing my book about my childhood/refugee camps. (DCF: I can’t wait to read it!!) This project has been a goal of mine for years so seeing it finally happen is amazing.